A police sergeant was sentenced to 14 months in jail after having cheated six of his colleagues out of HK$130,000.

The defendant, Yau Chun-kit, 40, admitted to 10 counts of fraud and accepting advantages as a prescribed officer at the Eastern Magistrates’ Court on Monday.

Yau was arrested by the ICAC after asking his subordinates for money for 17 months between 2012 and 2014, falsely claiming that he needed it to pay his daughter’s school fees and his sister’s medical fees. He used the money to gamble and make purchases.

The defendent.

Magistrate Leung Wing-chung said in his judgment that the crime was made more serious by the fact that the defendant is a police officer, which demands of him strict discipline and subjects him to anti-bribery regulations. He also said that the defendant’s actions complicated the relationships of those in the police force and compromised the force’s integrity and efficiency.

According to the magistrate, some of the six police officers, who were all subordinates of the defendants, had taken loans to lend money to the defendant and were in debt.

Eastern Magistrates’ Court. Photo: Google Earth.

However, the magistrate took into account the fact that the defendant, who had served on the force for 23 years, previously had a good track record, and that a number of people including the defendant’s supervisor and colleagues submitted letters of mitigation.

The defendant’s 14-month jail sentence commenced immediately.

Karen is a journalist and writer covering politics and legal affairs in Hong Kong for HKFP. She has also written features on human rights, public space, regional legal developments, social and grassroots activism, and arts & culture. She is a BA and LLB graduate from the University of Hong Kong.